(note: the draft and the final regulation is Japanese only, never translated into English.)
It is surprisingly early, as WA Dec 2010 PLENARY MEETING was held in Vienna on 9 and 10 December 2010.
The new rule is to provide a license exemption to Japanese exporters who implement ICP and have general bulk license. Currently, an export license is required if an exporter return any controlled items (which means items controlled by NSG, AG, MTCR or Wassenaar Arrangement) to original foreign shipper. Under certain condition, a license exemption of return shipment exists, but it is limited to the occasion an items had been originally exported from Japan, then returned and being imported into Japan, then again export the same item for return. This means foreign origin items which was imported into Japan, and found as discrepancy, sample for evaluation to be returned, short quality or whatever reason, such item is not eligible for the return exemption, therefore need product classification, and export license is required if it is the controlled items. The common challenge in such case is the classification difficulty by the Japanese exporters because they are not manufacturer, so they don't have sufficient technical specification to classify correctly. Even if they try to contact foreign manufacturer and to collect technical specification for proper classification, they face difficulties in language barrier in terminology, different classification numbering scheme, and company policy not to disclose technical specification of items, etc, etc.
The new return exemption gives "No License Required" status to such return shipment of foreign origin items for general export license holder automatically, whatever the items are controlled or non-controlled. Such license holders are not required to classify the item in export declaration to customs authority when they make return shipment to original foreign exporter. Just to give the reason of return, the invoice when the item was imported, Import Declaration, and AWB, etc, then the exemption is applied whatever the item is! (You don't have to classify the item.) The release from classification requirement is quite comfortable facilitation who have certain return shipments of controlled items in operation.
However as mentioned in above, this exemption is given only to general license holder who implement ICP. This means the company who don't have ICP cannot make use of this return exemption, typically SMEs. The exporters who submit ICP to METI is said around 1,500 companies all over Japan. This is quite small numbers compared with whole exporters in Japan.
(Source: CISTEC News and METI export control web site - Japanese only)
In summary, it describes as:
1. The US will support India's full membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Missile Technology Control Regime, the Australia Group, and the Wassenaar Arrangement over time.
2. The US will remove some India entities from the "Entity List"
3. The US will "realign" India in the Export Administration Regulations (EAR), giving India treatment similar to close allies and partners such as the UK and Canada.
4. BIS will take India out of Country Group D in the EAR, which will significantly narrow, but not eliminate, the US catch-all control prohibiting exports and reexports to missile activities in India.
5. India and the US will expand dialogue on export control issues though the US-India Technology Cooperation Group on topics such as capacity building, best practices sharing and outreach within industry.
By calling to India, "Hey, come to our side, please", this would be effective containment policy toward PRC China, and encourage export of US to emerging market in Asia.
It is expected this EPA come into force sometime in 2011.
(Ref. METI web site - Japanese: http://www.meti.go.jp/press/20101114001/20101114001.html)
This is bearing in mind APEC meeting this week in Yokohama and recent hot topic of TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Agreement.
Overall, it is very general and just announcing basic strategy how Japanese government tackle the future FTA negotiation, while working on domestic policy issue such as measures to be taken to agricultural industry.
The important point in this announcement is the decision of JPN gov't on TPP.
It is described as " it is necessary to act through gathering further information, and Japan, while moving expeditiously to improve domestic environment, will commence consultations with the TPP member countries."
For me, this seems to be vague and unclear message. It looks JPN did not decide to join TPP negotiation, but is interested in it. This is politically technical expression, paying highly consideration to domestic agricultural industry, while just giving impression "we go forward" to industrial sectors who strongly support the TPP.
However, the difficulties are in its numbering scheme which is totally different from the rest of the world, and in addition, language barrier always exist.
For example, 5A002.a is defined as 輸出令９項(7) 省令第８条一項九号. In English, it is described as "Export Trade Control Order category 9, (7), Ministerial Ordinance article 8, paragraph (1), item (ix)".
METI announced on Oct 20 that they made up the conversion table of JPN-EU controlled items list in MS-Excel spreadsheet format and disclosed in their web site. It is; http://www.meti.go.jp/policy/anpo/hp/eulist_taihihyo.html
I downloaded and briefly looked through the list. Although it contains more than 2,600 rows, it is simple, concise and easy to use. Looks useful for communicating with counterpart in foreign country because EU list is adopted by Singapore, Hong Kong, and Malaysia etc, and similar to US ECCN. This is good initiative and worth while praising the significant effort by METI.
I like this site, this is really neat and concise, explaining embargo country policy, what is classification is, and what kind of their product is under control with very simple manner so that normal business people can easily understand.
One thing noteworthy is that IBM Japan declare they "don't issue parameter sheet". Perhaps this implies they issue self-classification statement whether the product is controlled or non-controlled and ECCN, but don't provide technical specification with parameter sheet as supporting document. This practice is actually not welcomed in Japanese business society, most of Japanese customers who intend to export the products by themselves strongly require parameter sheet by manufacturer. IBM Japan's decision is operational-friendly, but may not be customer-friendly in Japanese business perspective. I would like to see whether their practice will be accepted in Japan.
Amount of penalty collected on incorrect import declarations is the highest based on historical records
The total non-declared and short-declared related value of all investigated companies was approximately JPY198 billion (approximately US$2.4 billion). The amount of penalty including shortage of duty & tax was approximately JPY14.5 billion (approx. US$179 million), an increase of 12% compared with previous year’s post audit results. This amount of duty & tax shortage and its penalty are the highest and worst in the history of customs valuation relating to import declarations.
Increased Number of Non-Compliance Companies
The post-entry audit team investigated a total of 6,204 companies. Of these, 4,356 or 70.2% of companies investigated were found to have failed to make correct import declarations, the numbers of non-compliant companies increased 1.3% compared with previous year. The average penalty amount per company was JPY3.3 millions (approx. US$41,100).
The top 5 product categories and its short duty & tax declarations amount are as follows. These top 5 categories make up 52.2% of short duty/tax amount.
1. Electrical Machinery (Chapter 85) JPY2.63 billions
2. Processed Food (Chapter 21) JPY1.67 billions
3. Machine and Mechanical appliances (Chapter 84) JPY1.26 billions
4. Apparel and clothing knitted or crocheted (Chapter 61) JPY0.75 billions
5. Apparel and clothing not kitted or crocheted (Chapter 62) JPY0.73 billions
Typical short-declaration case examples are as follows;
- The cost of material which was provided free of charge basis to an exporter of finished goods was not included in the import declaration value.
- The transaction price was variable depending on the sales result in Japan and it was retroactively adjusted. The variance amount was paid to an exporter, and the adjusted amount was not included in customs declaration.
- False application of preferential tariff. Although an importer don’t have appropriate certificate of preferential tariff for importing goods from China, declared as eligible goods of preferential tariff.
Japanese Customs conduct this post audit in customs valuation every year by randomly picking up the target companies. For recent years, the non-compliance rate continue to be higher in level of approx. 70%, the penalty amount is slightly increasing year by year, and no sign of decreasing. Non-compliance with customs laws may result in imposition of huge penalties and loss of credibility, it is encouraged for importers to conduct customs health check in order to find potential problem and manage the penalty risk.
Japan request for WTO consultation on certain Local Content Requirements in the Feed-in Tariff Program in Ontario, Canada
See this news release from METI: http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/data/20100913_01.html
"The Government of Ontario has established a Feed-in Tariff Program, in which electricity generated by using renewable energy (e.g. solar and wind energy) is subsidized.
The Program sets forth certain local content requirements, which accords less favorable treatments to imported equipments than those made in Ontario.
These requirements imposed by the province of Ontario are inconsistent with the Canada’s obligations under the WTO Agreement. Thus, Japan requested for consultations with the Canadian government."
The change is to implement Wassenaar December 2009 Plenary Agreement which covers dual-use goods and technologies.
The change pertains to Categories 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Part I (telecommunication), 6, 7, and 9.
Please be noted ECCN 5A002, 5D002, 6A002, 6A003, 8A002 and all related ECCNs will be implemented in a separate rule because of the sensitivity of the items and complexity of procedures.
In addition, APP (Adjusted Peak Performance) of digital computer 4A003 will be implemented in a separate rule when the President's report for High Performance Computers has been sent to Congress that sets forth the new APP in accordance with the National Defense Authorization Act for FY1998. (Looking at CCL of 4A003.b as of today, the APP is still 0.75WT, while WA 2009 set APP in 1.5WT.)
As for other countries, Japan and Hong Kong already implement Wassenaar 2009, while EU and Singapore still maintain Wassenaar 2008 dual-use list.
Within 10 years after the implementation, customs duty for the trade amount of 94% will be abolished. (Export from Japan to India is 90%, and export from India to Japan is 97% respectively.) Steel products or vehicle parts will be duty free in importing into India, this is promising news for Japanese manufacturers, who struggles in shrinking domestics market.
While India request to Japan to simplify the approval procedures for the sale of generic drugs and to expand job opportunities for Indians hoping to work in Japan, this request is not finalized yet, just agreed to keep discussing. Also, Japan keep a number of agricultural items, such as rice, wheat, meat and sugar etc., excluding from duty reduction.
(Reference: METI announcement http://www.meti.go.jp/press/20100909006/20100909006.html )
Malaysian MITI posted Key Features of the STA and FAQ on their web site. This is comprehensive and easy-to-understand guideline. Please see:
(or http://www.miti.gov.my/cms/index.jsp Home --> Guidline --> Strategic Trade Act)
Controlled Items List is not officially gazetted yet here, but by looking through the FAQ document, the category code is apparently similar to Wassenaar type ECCN (e.g. Category 4 is computer, Category 5 is telecommunication and information security). In FAQ, they mention about "ECCN" numbering scheme, cite as examples such as 1A002, 4D003, or 9E102 which looks like same scheme as US and EU.
In addition, this FAQ provide export permit types, application turn-around time, and the validity period. Malaysia have multiple types of bulk permit in audition to single-use permit.
This MITI web site is apparently new, since the total visitors shows below 100 as of today.
Perhaps, more details such as Ministerial Order will be published in this web site?
This time, again, is also addition of Iranian entities only, plus 39 Iranian entities make it total number of entities of the list 331.
This is off course based on the follow up action of UNSCR 1929, which is sanction to Iran.
Frequent update of this list is unusual, it has been usually once a year in practice.
Trade need to follow up to use the latest list for catch-all end-user screening.
For those who wish to know US Export Control, I strongly recommend to read below press release from White House.
"President Obama Lays the Foundation for a New Export Control System To Strengthen National Security and the Competitiveness of Key U.S. Manufacturing and Technology Sectors"
Also, the speech by Assistant Secretary Mr. Kevin Wolf is very comprehensive and indicating the picture how US export control reform will be. I believe trader must read his speech for understanding the new regulation! Don't miss out his very important message.
According to this letter, The Strategic Trade Act 2010 is expected to be implemented latest by October 2010. It is earlier schedule than expected, while most of traders don't see the controlled list and detailed procedure etc.
I will keep gathering information on this.
(Reference: http://www.miti.gov.my/cms/content.jsp?id=com.tms.cms.article.Article_3176d4a2-c0a81573-170c170c-67aecd2b&curpage=tt )
"Cross (tangential) flow filtration equipment and components"
2B352 is controlled under Australia Group ("AG") regime. In June 2010, Japan proposed AG to make exemption of certain components of 2B352.d and it was admitted in AG.
Accordingly, Japan update the local export control list.
2B352 items are treated by Health care industry and certain exemptions note would be beneficial for them.
The implementation is expected in certain months ahead.
(Source: http://search.e-gov.go.jp/servlet/Public?CLASSNAME=PCMMSTDETAIL&id=595110071 )
In view of the upcoming adaptation of the Ancillary encryption Note 4 in April 2011, Singapore Customs (SC) has updated their Encryption classification form (now known as Annex A - Product Questionnaire A-1 Cryptography).
When asked for further explanation on why they included questionnaires related to Note 4 even though it has not been implemented, SC explained that they will look at ALL the information (including those related to Note 4) provided by the traders as part of their classification process.
In my personal opinion, the usage of the new form before Note 4 is implemented is to prepare the SC classification team to be familiarized with the new section before the actual roll out in April 2011.
According to the web news below, The Foreign Trade Act of 1992 will be amended.
(Quote from http://www.taxguru.in/ )
The Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2010, (Sill’) has been passed by Rajya Sabha on 9 August 2010. The Bill seeks to amend the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act, 1992 (‘the Act’) which empowers the government to regulate trade in goods. The amendment now seeks to bring in ’services’ and ‘technology’ within the purview of this Act. It also aims to impose Quantitative Restrictions and to bring in provisions for more stringent control for trade of dual-use goods and technologies.
However, the effective date of the provisions would be notified separately.
(End of Quote)
From this article, I'm not quite sure what is the impact to traders, as the details are not described. It seems India will introduce the license control over the transfer of "services" and "technology", however if you look through the SCOMET list, certain kind of technology is already in the list. What is the new substantial impact of the amendment?
(Highlight of SCOMET list: http://dgftcom.nic.in/exim/2000/scomet.htm )
I looked through these forms, and find one interesting point.
It is in Annex A - Product Questionnaire A-1 Cryptography, which is questionnaire form of classification of encryption product.
In page 3 of this Annex A (Section C: Functionality of Product, question a. and b.), there are questions a.) and b.) to verify whether the product is "Ancillary encryption", which is exempted from Category 5 - part 2 in Wassenaar dual-use list.
But my understanding is that Strategic Goods (Control) Order 2010 (effective from 1 Apr 2010) don't yet reflect Wassenaar 2010 dual-use list which contains Ancillary encryption Note 4.
I looked through the Singapore list again, but I don't find Ancillary encryption Note 4 in Singapore list.
Why Singapore Customs introduce Ancillary encryption question into their classification application form? Are they implementing Ancillary encryption actually? or just for anticipating the future Strategic Goods list change? If any of the blog reader know, please share your idea.
- On April 01, 2010, export control law was amended, and all exporters in Japan are required to have classification skill (if I strictly translate the law, to assign responsible person for classification) regardless of company size and product lines.
- The problem is many of SMEs don't have such export control resource.
- METI secured national budget for consultation and training of export control to SMEs in FY2010. The annual budget is JPY110 millions. (approx. US$1.3 millions)
- CISTEC and JMC (Japan Machinery Center) are appointed as a contractor of this program. CISTEC take a role of dispatching consultant to SME for consultation of export control for FREE. JMC take a role of holding export control seminar for SMEs for FREE.
- The program is exclusively for SME, and a big company is not eligible for this program. The eligible SME is defined in its capital amount and the number of employees. For example, in SME of manufacturing industry, the eligible company is the capital amount less than JPY300 millions, or the number of employees less than 300.
From public point of view, this program is good trial for improving export compliance in Japan. Also for other Asian countries who schedule to introduce solid export control practice, it is good to follow and learn from this experiment in Japan.
From consulting point of view, with hearing and consultation from SMEs, useful database and consulting skill may be build up.
According to the latest news letter "inSYNC" 9th edition issued on August 18, 2010, Singapore have mutual recognition agreement of AEO (*) with Canada and Korea.
(*) Singapore call it as "Secure Trade Partnership - STP", and Canada call as "Partners in Protection - PIP", while Korea call as AEO.
Actually this is not so new information, as it was announced on June 25, 2010. It is same timing I drafted the Japan- EU, and Japan - Canada AEO mutual recognition. Perhaps, I heard Singapore's mutual recognition at that time, but it completely slipped out of my mind.
This article of AEO mutual recognition is neat and concise, I love it. We can know the essence of Singapore AEO system at a glance.
Singapore Customs is currently engaged in discussion of mutual recognition with China, Japan, New Zealand and the United States.
Among them, China would be the most challenging one. China have their own AEO systems (ranking the operators in AA, A, B, C, and D) but as long as I hear from reliable source, the actual implementation is still in doubt and the practice is different by port by port.
The report presents a decision that fully approves Japan’s claim that the EU’s customs duties in question are inconsistent with Article II (tariff concessions) of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).
I reported this issue in my blog on June 4, 2008, please see the details and the background below.
The EU may file an appeal against this report with the WTO Appellate Body within 60 days.
If no such appeal is filed, the panel report will be adopted by the WTO as its final decision.
(WTO announcement: http://www.wto.org/english/news_e/news10_e/375_376_377r_e.htm )
(METI announcement: http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/data/20100816_01.html )
See reference material:
EC Customs Information Portal
JMC (in Japanese)
- 8482.10 Ball bearings
Current rate: 9.6% (until Auguslt 31, 2010)
--> 4.1% (from September 01, 2010 until August 31, 2011)
- 8482.20 Tapered roller bearings
Current rate: 9.6% (until August 31, 2010)
--> 4.1% (from September 01, 2010 until August 31, 2011)
Background of Halt of Distribution under the Byrd Amendment (quoted from METI web site)
Japan took countermeasures against the U.S. in September 2005. The U.S. repealed the Byrd Amendment in February 2006. However, since the distribution of duties will be continued under the transitional clause, Japan urged the U.S. to halt the distribution and extended the validity of the countermeasures. As the U.S. had still not yet suspended the distribution, Japan further extended the validity of the countermeasures by one year in September 2008, following its alternation of commodity items and duty rates. Moreover, since the distribution under the transitional clause still continued in 2008, Japan further extended the validity of countermeasures by one year in September 2009, following its alternation of duty rates.
Cabinet decision was made on August 10 and it made this countermeasure official, according to MOF Press Release http://www.mof.go.jp//jouhou/kanzei/ka220810.htm )
(Details of Background of Halt of Distribution under the Byrd Amendment: page 17 - 18 of http://www.meti.go.jp/english/report/downloadfiles/2010WTO/2010priority.pdf )
Like recent regulation development in U.S. and EU, Japan also follow U.N. Security Council Resolution 1929 ("UNSCR 1929") which calls on states to take actions for preventing Iran's nuclear proliferation activities.
Usually, this end-user list is updated only once a year. In 2010, the new list was announced on May 26, 2010. Frequent update like this time is not so usual.
Update of Proliferation End-User List is one of Japanese government's actions to follow UNSCR 1929. The update of this time is additional of 20 Iranian entities (no other county this time!) as below. All of them are Iranian entities.
- Defense Technology and Science Research Center (DTSRC)
- Doostan International Company (DICO)
- Fater Institute(Faater)
- Gharagahe Sazandegi Ghaem
- Ghorb Karbala
- Imensazan Consultant Engineers Institute(ICEI)
- M. Babaie Industries
- Malek Ashtar University
- Ministry of Defense Logistics Export(MODLEX)
- Modern Industries Technique Company(MITEC)
- Nuclear Research Center for Agriculture and Medicine (NFRPC)
- Omran Sahel
- Oriental Oil Kish
- Pejman Industrial Services Corporation
- Rah Sahel
- Rahab Engineering Institute
- Sahel Consultant Engineers
- Sepasad Engineering Company
- Shahid Karrazi Industries
This update make the number of listed concerned entities in total 292.
When exporter ship goods or provide technology to the listed entities, the export license application is required to METI unless it is obvious that the transaction is NOT related to WMD activities. Currently, this list covers entities in Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, India, PRC China, Syria, Israel, Taiwan, and Afghanistan.
(Source: http://www.meti.go.jp/policy/anpo/hp/law_document/tutatu/t08kaisei/100803EUL/t08kaisei_kaiteikasho.pdf )
This mechanism is indeed beneficial for U.S. importers allowing them to obtain substantial import duty savings, industries will welcome this decision.
Thanks, Danielo, for sharing useful information.
(Source: http://www.ddcustomslaw.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=frontpage&Itemid=1&lang=en )
In Japan, GSP preferential tariff is applicable to approx. 3,500 items which are originated in 154 developing countries or regions. Among GSP eligible items, approx. 1,180 items can be allowed until they exceed the ceilings of either limited amount or quantity.
For example, Chapter 76 (Aluminum and articles thereof) have GSP preferential tariff as 0%, while MFN tariff for Chapter 76 is from 2% - 7.6% depending on items. The annual ceiling amount of Aluminum item is JPY11.7 billions for fiscal year April 01, 2010 to March 31, 2011. As for GSP utilization of Aluminum item from China, it reached the maximum amount per country or 20% of total ceiling amount in May 2010, therefore MOF suspended the GSP preferential for Aluminum item originated in China on May 18, 2010. After this suspension date until the end of the fiscal year, Chinese origin Aluminum items are to be imposed in MFN rate. Other same examples of suspension of GSP privilege to Chinese origin items are; Fireworks (HS 36.04) on May 18, Article of leather (HS 43.02 - 43.03) on May 18, and certain carpets and other textile floor coverings (HS 57.02) on June 16, and garments and clothing accessories of cotton (HS 62.09) on May 18 etc. Most of GSP ceiling amount of textile items in apparel industry are used up by Chinese origin items in early stage of fiscal year.
The background of this amendment plan is rapid increase of the import from China. The import amount from China to Japan exceed JPY10 trillions, this makes China as top trade partner country for Japan. Chinese origin products are generally accepted as competitive in international market, questions come arise why Chinese origin products occupy the most of GSP preferential treatment which is a trade measure for contributing to developing countries.
MOF plan to implement this GSP ceiling limitation amendment starting from next fiscal year, April 2011. This will correct the disproportion among GSP eligible countries, and the developing countries other than China will be able to enjoy more GSP preferential opportunity, but the cost of import from China is expected to increase due to less GSP utilization allowance to China. Especially for small medium companies who import apparel items and daily necessities will be negatively affected because most of such items are imported from Chinese manufacturing sites and supply source is not diversified enough to other countries or regions.
Traders who import from China and utilize GSP preferential tariff are encouraged to carefully plan the sourcing strategy for next fiscal year.
In October 20 & 21, 2010, American Conference Institute ("ACI") will have Singapore Summit on Export Controls Compliance in Marriott Hotel in Singapore.
This seminar is really useful for executives and managers who are in charge of trade compliance in global companies.
Details are in this URL: http://www.americanconference.com/Singapore.htm
I will be a one of the speakers on Oct 21 afternoon session, "Japan Export Controls: Preventing Product Classification Pitfalls", together with Mr. Riko in Mitsubishi Corp, General Manager - Security Trade Control Office. It would be really exciting opportunity for me.
Sub-topics of our presentation are as follows.
• How to verify whether your products are controlled under basic Japan controls.
• Discussing the uniqueness of classification numbering scheme.
• Preventing common mistakes in language translation.
• Overcoming operational challenges in “parameter sheet”for enough evidence of classification.
As a speaker, my colleagues and friends are entitled to $200 off the price. Before Aug 17 (early bird expiration date), you will have $500 off compared to the standard price.
My blog reader can be regarded as my friend and enjoy registration fee discount. If you want to have discount, please contact to Bryan Cave International Trade via Useful Link in the right corner of this blog.
The partnership would bring the U.S. together with four countries that already have free trade deals with the U.S. - Singapore, Chile, Australia and Peru - as well as New Zealand, Brunei, and Vietnam. Canada and Malaysia have also expressed interest in joining the pact.
The second round aimed to settle a key issue of how the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership would overlap with existing free trade deals between its members. Trade officials reportedly stated there was also consensus on other issues, such as exploring additional measures related to job creation and the environment. Yet, sorting out details related to market opening timelines and other issues will take more time.
(Sources: Office of the U.S. Trade Representative; The Wall Street Journal )
Items incorporating or using “cryptography” will no longer be classified under Category 5, part 2 if their primary function is not communications, networking, computing or “information security” and the cryptographic functionality is limited to supporting the primary function.
Examples of such items include robotics, household appliances, fire alarm systems, inventory management software, CAD software, and transportation systems.
Such items may be self-classified under another category of the Commerce Control List, or as EAR99.
My interest is then, what other countries implement (or schedule of implementation) this Ancillary Cryptography exemption Wassenaar Note 4 into their own domestic export control regulation.
Already Implemented country: US (June 25, 2010), Japan (April 01, 2010), and Hong Kong (June 14, 2010)
Not yet implementing (as of June 27, 2010): EU, Singapore, Korea, and Taiwan. etc.
Different approach: Canada will not incorporate provisions into law until end of 2010 or early 2011. Instead, have Broadbase permit implementation.
Please bear in mind, even if the item is totally same, the classification of cryptography item may be different from country by country, and therefore need export license (or need to seek license exception).
This mutual recognition offers enhanced trade facilitation opportunities provided by customs to certified AEO traders in both sides who have invested in securing their supply chains.
Following the mutual recognition with EU announced on June 24, Canada is 4th country Japan signed AEO mutual recognition, New Zealand, US, and EU.
The contents of the agreement is almost similar to mutual recognition with EU.
In Canada, AEO system is called as Partners in Protection ("PIP")
(Resource: http://www.mof.go.jp/jouhou/kanzei/ka220625.htm )
This mutual recognition offers enhanced trade facilitation opportunities provided by customs to certified AEO traders in both sides who have invested in securing their supply chains.
This mutual recognition with EU is 3rd one for Japan, following with New Zealand (signed on May 2008) and with U.S. (signed on June 2009). EU have had mutual recognition with Switzerland and Norway only. Japan is their first AEO mutual recognition country other than Europe area.
The main contents of this agreement is as follows.
- Both Japan and EU customs authority will reflect the risk analysis of the status of AEO traders in customs examination or inspection when the goods are exported or imported by AEO traders in other side.
- Both parties will respect the status of AEO traders in other side in application of variety of security operation.
- Both parties will make effort to develop common system how priorities cargoes are handled in emergency.
- Both parties will continue discussion of further benefit of mutual recognition.
(Resource Japan : http://www.mof.go.jp/jouhou/kanzei/ka220624.htm )
In addition, according to Nikkei Newspaper on June 25, AEO mutual recognition with Canada is also in progress. The good news with Canada is expected to be announced within this month.
The first meeting will be held over two days from June 24 (Thu) to June 25 (Fri) in Ulan-Bator, to be attended by experts from industry, government, and academia of both countries.
During the first meeting, the experts will exchange views on topics including bilateral economic relations and items to be included in the possible EPA.
Mongolia don't have any FTA with other countries, this is first FTA trial for them.
Mongolia's economy is centered on agriculture and mining. Mongolia has rich mineral resources, and copper, coal, molybdenum, tin, tungsten, and gold account for a large part of industrial production. For Japan, these natural resource is very attractive trade interest. Among export amount from Mongolia, the mining industry consists of 80% approximately.
By including Eritrea as UN Arms Embargo countries group, an exporter in Japan need to apply export license to METI if the end-use is conventional military purpose. The scope of goods is very broad industrial goods except food and wooden items. Please be noted this catch-all scheme is NOT for Weapon of Massive Destruction ("WMD") rule, but under conventional weapon catch-all rule which was introduced in November 2008. The enforcement practice is slightly eased compared with WMD, e.g. "storage" of conventional weapon is out of scope in end-use, while "storage" is controlled end-use under WMD catch-all.
Eritrea is a country in the Horn of Africa. It is bordered by Sudan and Ethiopia, and have an coastline on the Red Sea. The estimated population is 5 millions. As for trade with Japan, the annual export amount from Japan to Eritrea is approx. 400 millions yen (US$4 millions) in 2007, quite a small amount. The main export item is automobiles, truck and bus etc.
(Source: http://www.meti.go.jp/press/20100618001/20100618001.html )
With this notification, the Agreement will enter into force on July 1 (Thu), 2010 in relation to the Republic of the Philippines.
This Agreement has already entered into force among Japan, Singapore, Laos, Viet Nam, Myanmar, Brunei, Malaysia, Thailand and Cambodia.
After Philippines implementation, the remaining country who don't enter into force will be Indonesia only.
According to the announcement by Trade and Industry Department ("TID"), the revised control list becomes effective on 14 June 2010.
Those who voluntarily reports to the Customs Department on the potential customs risks and/or customs offences that result in shortage of import duties and taxes, e.g. false declaration of tariff code, undervalue declaration, misuse of customs privilege and BOI privilege,...etc., shall be eligible for a waiver of import duty penalty and VAT penalty and shall only be subjected to the payment of import duty shortage, VAT shortage and surcharge 1.5% per month. Such waiver is based on 2 conditions as follows:
1) The customs risks and/or customs offences are not caused or made intentionally, and
2) The right to participate in the Customs Voluntary Disclosure Program is just 1 time per a company (those who previously utilized the right shall not be able to join this program).
Importation of restricted goods without import licenses and hand-carrying or smuggling goods into Thailand without duly processing import customs formality will be deemed as intentional customs offences and will not be eligible for a waiver of penalties under the Customs Voluntary Disclosure Scheme.
Related parties therefore are advised to take this golden opportunity by making self-audit and declaring any potential customs risks found to the Customs Department during 15 May 2010 to 30 September 2010so as to minimize duty exposures and comply with customs regulations.
The number of entities in the updated list increased from last year's 247 to 272. The updated list consists of 34 new entities, while 9 entities were deleted. The net increase is therefore 25 entities. The new entities added are mostly from Iran and North Korea. There are no Japanese entities in the list. Hence, this list is also know as "Foreign User List". The update list can be downloaded from METI web site.
(The name of deleted entities are also available from the bottom end part of this URL.)
The Foreign User list is not an embargo list but an indicative list for METI to determine whether an export license is necessary or not under the Catch-All export control regulation. The entities listed may have or previously had concern regarding WMD or proliferation activities. Export items which are apparently used for purposes other than WMD related activities may not be required to have an export license. Business are encouraged to closely check the end-use purpose when exporting to these entities to determine whether an export license is needed.
[Thanks to my friend in Singapore, Jason, for providing this information.]
The new Malaysia export control/transshipment law, which passed the Malaysian Parliament on April 5 of this year.
Called the Strategic Trade Act, the legislation "provides for control over the export, transshipment, transit and brokering of strategic items, including arms and related material, and other activities that will or may facilitate the design, development and production of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery systems...." The Act does not specifically identify the goods and technology which are considered strategic, though this term may span the EU list.
The Act also requires permitting for shipments of non-strategic or "unlisted" items to restricted end-users, and denies shipments to prohibited end users. Other provisions of the legislation call for extraterritorial enforcement, imposition of substantial penalties for non-compliance, record-keeping requirements, and potential for exemptions. The Malaysian Ministry of International Trade and Industry is now working on regulations to implement the legislation that will be published in the Gazette at some point.
Hong Kong's current control list was amended in February 2010, and covers the revision adopted by international regimes up to end-2008. The control list update this time is to mirror the latest changes of Wasssenaar dual-use list up to end-2009, which is commonly traded strategic items such as electronics, computers, telecommunications and information security products.
The one of significant changes to traders in Hong Kong’s Schedule 1 list would be removal of certain cryptography items in Category 5 - part 2. By reflecting Note 4 (exemption note of “Ancillary” cryptography) of Wassenaar 2009 list, which decontrol items of incorporating the cryptography as “non-primarily” function, many of digital gadget and software will be no longer the license required items, such as gaming, household appliances, business process software, medical clinical equipments, and CAD software etc.
Another important change would be removal of cryptography devices from Schedule 2, which is the list of "more sensitive" group of strategic items, and require import/export license in transit and air-transshipment in Hong Kong. Schedule 2 contains military items and nuclear related items as such strictly controlled items. Encryption devices in transit through Hong Kong will be no longer require a license.
Effective date of the change is uncertain yet. Once the legal procedure is completed, the Order will be issued to inform traders of the effective date. Last time, the scheduled change was announced in mid-November 2009 and implementation was in early February 2010.
As of April 2010 among Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore, Japan have already reflected Wassenaar dual-use list of 2009, while Singapore still have its dual-use list reflecting Wassenaar as of 2008.
(Source: http://www.stc.tid.gov.hk/english/circular_pub/2010_stc02.html )
Outline of the measures
1. The ban on export of all goods destined for North Korea shall be extended by continuing the requirement that exporters obtain export approval from the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (Article 48, Paragraph 3 of the Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Law ["FEFTL"]).
2. The ban on import of all goods originating in or shipped from North Korea shall be extended by continuing the requirement that importers obtain import approval from the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (Article 52 of the FEFTL).
3. To ensure the enforcement of these restrictions, the following transactions shall be banned.
- Transactions involving buying/selling, loaning/borrowing, or giving of goods that involve the movement of the goods between third countries and North Korea (Article 25, Paragraph 6 of the FEFTL)
- Payments of import bills for goods originating in or shipped from North Korea that are imported without import approval (Article 16, Paragraph 5 of the FEFTL).
4. Goods exported for humanitarian purposes shall be exempted from the above restrictions.
These restrictions shall be in effect from April 14, 2010 to April 13, 2011.
(Source: METI web site http://www.meti.go.jp/english/press/data/20100409_01.html )
Malaysia government pass Strategic Trade Bill and introduce solid export control regulation.
The summary is in below news source. For the companies who have operating unit in Malaysia should keep monitoring this regulatory development.
(Source: UPS Trade Broadcast as of March 31, 2010)
Officials from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are helping the trade community adjust to the Importer Security Filing rule, commonly known as "10+2" because of the 10 security data elements required from importers and two from carriers, which must generally be transmitted to CBP 24 hours before a U.S.-bound container is loaded aboard a ship. CBP began full enforcement of the rule on January 26, 2010 and plans to gradually step up enforcement measures throughout the year.
During a recent gathering of the Coalition of New England Companies for Trade, Richard DiNucci, director of the Secure Freight Initiative, reportedly told attendees that weekly filings of the 10+2 data have increased by 25 percent since January 26. DiNucci also reportedly stated that, "About 70 to 80 percent of importers are filing, and some ports are 95 to 100 percent compliant." He added that CBP is continuing to reach out to importers to explain the rules.
According to DiNucci, CBP will send out warning letters "shortly" to importers that are not in compliance with the rule but "will not penalize importers who have failed." At the same time, Cynthia Whittenburg, the director of the CBP Trade Facilitation and Administration Division, said the new Importer Security Filing rule would be integrated into CBP's ACE system, when it transitions to what she called "steady state" in 2011.
About the seminar: http://www.americanconference.com/ChinaExport.htm
"After the tremendous success of its export controls conferences in Europe and the United States, ACI and C5 Group are proud to announce the inaugural China Summit on Export Controls Compliance in Beijing. Attendees will benefit from the practical perspective of 21 seasoned corporate export compliance executives from companies such as AMD, Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment, Airbus, Dresser, General Electric, General Motors, Huawei, Hydra-Electric, IBM, Invensys, Intel, Microsoft, Norinco, Tektronix, Sun Microsystems, SMIC, Texas Instrument. Get an update on regulatory and policy initiatives from top Government officials and learn how industry is setting up internal controls to comply in this constantly changing global legal landscape. The agenda will include the latest information on
- Implementing an internal export controls compliance program for China operations
- How to identify whether your customer is a reliable party
- Minimizing risks when exporting technology to foreign third parties
- Train employees to prevent export violations
- Incorporate Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore export controls requirements into your overall plan
- Using license exception for products which encryption is not core function
Participants will also receive a comprehensive set of written materials prepared by the speakers particularly for this conference. These are invaluable reference materials which you will use again and again long after the conference is over.
Register now to ensure your place at this unique export controls compliance benchmarking event in China. Call 1-888-224-2480 in the US, or 44 7878 6888 in Europe."
The relevant Ministerial Ordinance and Notifications for stipulating updated export control list was announced on March 05, 2010.
As for WA dual-use items, last list change was October 2009. It was to reflect WA 2007 list.
Now Japan will implement both 2008 and 2009 list at once on April 01, 2010.
This is significant change of list update, as change including 2 years equivalent lists at once is not so usual.
For example, as for 4A003.b, the technical bar level is APP 0.75WT, which reflect WA 2008 list.
"US EAR 4A003.b: “Digital computers” having an “Adjusted Peak Performance” (“APP”) exceeding 0.75 weighted TeraFLOPS (WT);"
In Japan's new list, the equivalent category is APP1.5WT by reflecting WA 2009 list.
Another example is Category 5 - part 2. In WA 2009 list update is to reduce the scope of category 5 part 2 note 4 “ancillary cryptography”. The direct result of this new definition is that lots of cryptography items are no longer controlled by the dual use list of Wassenaar if the primary functions of goods, software or technology is not information security. Typical examples are items for gaming, car accessories, and home electrical goods etc which contain encryption but not sending/receiving encryption via network with outside. Accordingly, Japan will implement this exemption rule of encryption items from April this year by stipulating it into Notification called "Unyo Tsutatsu (for goods)" and "Ekimu Tsutatsu (for software and service)".
In Japanese classification practice, to fill in item's technical specification into Parameter sheet is popular procedure. Many companies will be busy for re-newing new parameter sheet and review its classification in these months.
EU and Vietnamese officials will now work together towards the formal start of negotiations as well as an agreed framework for the talks to reach an FTA.
EU have already started bilateral FTA negotiation with Singapore, as reported in this blog in December 2009. As regional FTA (EU-Asean) is stuck with issues and difference of opinions from various parties, EU looks like making shift to bilateral FTA with each Asean country where possible.
On February 12, 2010, Singapore Customs announced a planned update of Strategic Goods Control List. To be in line with international practice, Singapore Customs need to update this export control list regularly. As such, the Strategic Goods (Control) Order 2009 will be rescinded and replaced with a new Order 2010, which will incorporate the latest revision adopted by the four multilateral export control regimes such as NSG, MTCR, Australia Group and Wassenaar Arrangement. The new Order will take effect on 01 Apr 2010.
The Strategic Goods (Control) Order 2010 will include new entries, some deletions, as well as some addition of exemption notes. As per dual-use items, the control list will be based on the updated list of Wassenaar Arrangement in December 2008, which are incorporated also into the latest revisions of the European Union (EU)'s List of Dual-Use Items and Technology (updated in May 2009), US EAR (update in December 2009), Hong Kong Dual-use Goods list in Schedule 1 (implemented in February 2010), and Japan export control list (will be implemented in April 2010).
Examples of changes in the list of IT/electronics commodities are as follows:
- Electronics: 3A001.a.7 (Field Programmable Logic Devices) – Due to a change in technical specifications, control over certain field programmable logic devices is eliminated. The new control parameters are clearer and take into account advances in technology.
- Information Security: 5A002 (Encryption) – Control is relaxed over certain wireless personal area network equipment devices with published or commercial cryptographic standard (including home entertainment systems, peripherals for PC, cell phone headsets etc.), reflected through two additional exemption notes (h) and (i).
While the parameter change of controlled list requires traders to review their items classification, good news is to have “re-synchronize” the classification again with US EAR. Since US EAR implemented updated Wassenaar 2008 parameter in December 2009, traders in Singapore who refer US ECCN to their items have experienced classification disparities between US ECCN and Singapore control list. For example in 5A002 items, the cryptography item has been decontrolled by new exemption note (h) or (i) under US EAR since December 2009, but same item is still controlled under DL5A002 under Singapore regulation. From April 2010, such disparities will be resolved for Wassenaar dual-use items. Traders are encouraged to review their classification again based on new list parameter.
On February 9, 2010, Ministry of Finance ("MOF") announced on Customs web site that they will increase penalty amount of customs compliance violation by amending Customs Law.
The draft of the amendment law have been through Cabinet Decision and submitted to the National Diet. The amendment of the law will be on April 01, 2010. (*)
Followings are the quick outline of the penalty enhancement.
- Penalty of Customs Duty evasion
Amendment of: Customs Law Article 110.
Current: Imprisonment with work for not more than five years or a fine of not more than five million yen, or both
Amendment: imprisonment with work for not more than ten years or a fine of not more than ten million yen, or both
Reason: With the growing complexity of global trade, and with more vicious and skillful duty evasion method, MOF decided to increase the penalty amount. Also, considered being in line with the penalty amount of other economic crime or domestic tax evasion penalty.
- Penalty of violation of prohibited export/import items (for Narcotic, marijuana etc.)
Amendment of: Customs Law Article 108-4, and 109.
Current: imprisonment with work for not more than seven years or a fine of not more than thirty million yen, or both
Amendment: imprisonment with work for not more than ten years or a fine of not more than thirty million yen, or both
Reason: Increase of illegal import of Narcotic. To have reasonable balance with other relevant crime related laws, and with the Customs Duty evasion.
- Penalty of violation of prohibited export/import items (for Intellectual Property Infringement items etc.)
Amendment of: Customs Law Article 108-4, and 109.
Current: imprisonment with work for not more than seven years or a fine of not more than seven million yen, or both
Amendment: imprisonment with work for not more than ten years or a fine of not more than ten million yen, or both
(*) According to MOF officer, the implementation of the penalty provision is likely to be in June 2010, as it is required to have certain period to make known to the public.
- "Digital computers" having an 'Adjusted Peak Performance' ('APP') exceeding 1.5 Weighted TeraFLOPS (WT);
--> In current list, APP is 0.75WT. This is relax of technical specification, and APP 1.5 is according to Wassenaar 2009 list.
- Equipment specially designed for aggregating the performance of "digital computers" by providing external interconnections which allow communications at unidirectional data rates exceeding 2.0 Gbyte/s per link.
--> In current list, the rate is 1.25 Gbyte/s. This is relax of technical specification, and this rate is according to Wassenaar 2009.
I looked into the list more closely whether Category 5 parts Note 4 (exemption like Ancillary encryption) is there or not, but I don't find it.
I'm a bit surprised to see this list update, because it is very early to incorporate Wassenaar list change. Generally, it takes 1 year later or more. In addition, the Wassenaar 2008 list will be implemented from April 2010 in Japan. The public comment list is not reflecting fully of Wassenaar 2009 agreement. It looks like "early harvest" of dual-use items decontrol. As long as I know, no other country implement Wassenaar 2009 so soon.
As this announcement is public comment stage, I will keep monitoring this list change.
Implementation of internal export control compliance programme (CP) requirement for all exporters.
Under existing practices, only exporters who wish to obtain bulk export licenses are required to submit a CP to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) for approval.
However, in the revision of the Japanese Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Law (FEFTL), effective from 1 April 2010, all exporters will be required to implement CP..... (continue)
Above statement provide wrong information. For those who follow the recent FEFTL revision in Japan, it is easy to guess the author of this article apparently confuse the CP and "Exporter Compliance Standard" which was newly set forth in the FEFTL article 55-10.
Article 55-10 do NOT require all exporters to implement CP, but follow the compliance "Standard" which METI sets separately in Ministerial Ordinance. Otherwise, Guidance, Advice, Recommendation, Order and otherwise Penalty will be forced by METI. Exporter Compliance Standard just describe very very basic matters to be followed by exporters to be compliance to export control regulation. Normal CP (e.g. sample recommended by CISTEC) generally covers such basic export compliance matters, therefore CP holders do not need any additional new requirement after April 2010.
Just think with some common sense, you can find above information is rather strange.
FEFTL Article 1 states the purpose of FEFL as "on the basis of the freedom of foreign exchange, foreign trade and other foreign transactions, ....... through the minimum necessary control or coordination of foreign transactions", it may be against this purpose.
Also from practical operational point of view, if government force "millions of" all exporters in Japan to implement and submit CP to METI, that will jeopardize their operational capacity.
The trade bulletin provided by big consulting firm is really really excellent one, only except this Japanese export control topic. I won't disclose the name of this firm, but keep in my mind as a lesson, that I also should be careful to provide correct information.
As of 1 January, for ASEAN-6 an additional 7,881 tariff lines will come down to zero tariffs, bringing the total tariff lines traded under the Common Effective Preferential Tariffs for ASEAN Free Trade Area (CEPT-AFTA) to 54,457 or 99.11%. Additionally, with the reduction, the average tariff rate for these countries is expected to further decrease from 0.79% in 2009 to just 0.05% in 2010. In 2008, intra-ASEAN import value of commodities for these 7,881 tariff lines amounted to US$ 22.66 billion, or 11.84% of ASEAN-6 import value within ASEAN.
The tariff lines include final consumer products such as air conditioners; chilli, fish and soya sauces; as well as intermediate materials such as motorcycle components and motor car cylinders. Other products include iron and steel, plastics, machinery and mechanical appliances, chemicals, prepared foodstuff, paper, cement, ceramic and glass sectors.
The elimination of tariffs by ASEAN-6 underscores ASEAN’s commitment to dismantle tariffs and keep intra-ASEAN trade open. It will also serve as a catalyst for the development of the single market and production base projected by the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint.
The actual impact and how much this final instalment will be translated as savings for consumers will depend on the market dynamics of the respective ASEAN-6 countries. The Secretary-General of ASEAN, Dr Surin Pitsuwan, said that “We sincerely hope that all parties will act to ensure that the man on the street will benefit from these reductions in tariffs.”
As for the business community, especially the downstream producers, Dr Surin said that they also stand to gain. “Lower cost of inputs will allow the business community a wider choice of goods, and in the process, they will move towards becoming more competitive globally, as envisaged in the AEC Blueprint,” he added.
The CEPT-AFTA covers the whole range of products traded by the ASEAN Member States and provides for the gradual reduction in tariffs of these products, which has been ongoing since 1993. Under the CEPT-AFTA schedule for tariff reduction, each ASEAN Member State is allowed to place their products in the normal track, where the commitment is for the tariffs to be reduced to zero by 2010 for ASEAN-6 and 2015 for the remaining four countries, namely Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar and Viet Nam. In 2010, these countries will also see tariff reductions under the CEPT-AFTA commitments to 5%, where the average tariff rate will decrease from 3% in 2009 to 2.61%.
Under the CEPT-AFTA, agricultural products such as tobacco, coffee, live animals and animal products, which come under the Sensitive List (SL), will have their tariffs reduced to 5% on 2010 and to zero tariff by 2015. The Highly Sensitive List (HSL), comprising rice, will have their tariffs capped on a specified date. As for the General Exclusion List (GEL), the tariffs will remain based on factors such as national security and morals/health/aesthetic/archaeological grounds (e.g.: weapons and opium). As of today, 487 tariff lines or 0.89% of tariff lines for ASEAN-6 still remain in the SL, HSL and GEL categories.
Besides tariff liberalisation, ASEAN is also embarking on parallel initiatives in trade facilitation to complement tariff reduction. ASEAN is also actively working on formulating streamlined and simplified customs procedures for clearance of goods, eliminating non-tariff measures, developing the ASEAN Single Window and the ASEAN Trade Repository, improving investment protection, providing for dispute settlement and better Intellectual Property Rights regime and removing the obstacles hindering the movement of professional and skilled workers.
(Source: http://www.aseansec.org/24146.htm )
In order to claim the tariff reduction and exemption privileges under AIFTA, importers must comply with the criteria and procedures set in the Customs Notification No. 105/2552 (http://www.customs.go.th/Declaration/DeclarationResult.jsp?Docidt=A01261&tlechk=1), as well as obtain a certificate of origin Form AI, issued in accordance with AIFTA rules of origin, at the time of importation. The AIFTA rules of origin require goods to meet the following rules.
1) General Rule: Regional value content (RVC) of at least 35% of F.O.B. value and a change in 6 digits Tariff Sub-Heading (CTSH);
2) Product Specific Rules (PSRs): At present, ASEAN and India are still to finalize the PSRs.
In addition, AIFTA does facilitate the trading through ‘third party invoicing’ and ‘Back-to-Back Form AI’ schemes.
Under AIFTA, Thailand, as well as India and other 4 ASEAN countries (i.e. Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore) commits to the tariff reduction modality as shown below. Please note that the tariff reduction of the rest of ASEAN countries (i.e. the Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam) follows a different reduction modality.
- Normal Track 1: Tariff on about 71% of total traded goods to be gradually reduced to 0% by 31 December 2013.
- Normal Track 2: Tariff on about 9% of total traded goods to be gradually reduced to 0% by 31 December 2016.
- Sensitive Track: Tariff on about 10% of total traded goods to be gradually reduced to 5% by 31 December 2016.
- Standstill Items: Tariff on goods not exceeding 50 items will be maintained at 5%.
- Highly Sensitive List: Tariff on certain number of goods (14 in case of Thailand, and 5 in case of India) will be reduced by about 25-50% to agreed rates by 31 December 2019.
- Exclusion List: In case of Thailand, there will be no tariff reduction for 463 items while India has put 489 items in the Exclusion List.
Thailand’s tariff rates under AIFTA for each tariff line can be found at the Thai Customs website at http://www.customs.go.th/Declaration/DeclarationResult.jsp?Docidt=A01259&tlechk=2.
Many US companies failed to screen trade with restricted Chinese entity, China Precision Machinery Import-Export Corp ("CPMIEC"), which is listed in Specially Designated Nationals List issued by OFAC, and imported various products from the affiliated companies in China.
For most US companies, it looks no willful violation intention, and just missed the screening.
The cause of screening failure is that the company name is not exactly match by using similar name or affiliated name, or a unit of CPMIEC with different name, etc. There are so many aka (also known as) names in one entity. It is easy to rename or make front company. OFAC added one more aka name for CPMIEC in SDN list on Dec 31, but it is like a endless race.
I understand the difficulty of this kind of screening, as I have similar experience in screening failure when I worked in US computer company. For example, there are some Japanese individuals who are listed on US Denied Persons or Debarred list. Call center happen to receive the call from one of these restricted entities in Japan and provided verbal technical service. Call center of this US company have capability to check such restricted entities by using the list in database, however the name of the person is always recognized in Kanji (Chinese character).
US government don't provide the name of restricted entities in local language, but provide only in alphabetical words. Japanese name expressed by alphabetical words often lead to so many types of Kanji names, so it is really difficult to exactly find the entity only by alphabetical name.
This FTA remove tariffs on grape exports to Malaysia, and wheat sales to the Philippines.
The agreement is the Australia's largest FTA, and covers 12 economies and 600 million people with a combined GDP of US$2.8 trillion. By 2020, the deal will eliminate tariffs on 96 percent of Australia's export to Asean nations.
Australia and New Zealand, which have had their own trade agreement since 1983, are seeking to tap into Asia's growth with Brunei, Myanmar, Malaysia, Singapore, Vietnam and the Philippines. The remaining Asean members, Indonesia, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand, are expected to ratify the agreement later this year.
(Source and reference: bilaterals.org http://www.bilaterals.org/rubrique.php3?id_rubrique=181&lang=en )